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2007 draft review

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Old
01-21-2012, 06:47 PM
  #1
Minor Boarding
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2007 draft review

New article written by Andrew Knoll for hockeysfuture

Do you agree with him?


I wouldn't label Hickey a bust just jet...He's still a ok prospect in my eyes.
Other than that, it's a good article...

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01-21-2012, 07:03 PM
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Eh, can't agree Hickey a bust and Cameron a prospect. Plus, I've never heard Hickey not having a competitive edge. Wonder how much this guy really has seen of LA's 07 class play.

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01-21-2012, 07:18 PM
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The key thing, that I've heard many times, is if you can get 2-3 NHL players out of a draft, you've had a successful draft.

Simmonds and Martinez are NHL players. Hickey still has time to turn things around, and who knows how Oscar Moller would have done if he played in Sutter's system (personally, a line of Moller - Loktionov - Lewis sounds young and exciting).

Overall, it's a decent article. The Hickey pick likely will be questionable at best, but otherwise it's a fair article.

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01-21-2012, 11:37 PM
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I agree with everything other than Hickey being called a bust. He is guaranteed to play in the NHL. Who knows if he establishes himself has a legitimate top 4 puck mover, but at the very least, he is guaranteed to play in the NHL for someone sooner or later.

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01-22-2012, 04:53 AM
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I remember watching Hickey get drafted on TSN and hoping that he'd follow in the footsteps of JJ in terms of quick development.

To this day, I have yet to see him play. Would be interested in hearing what this board thinks of his play. Just a sort of summary, comparison ect.

Is he a victim of our systematic depth at D?

Zero games in the NHL as a 4th overall pick is relatively unprecedented as far as I know. He doesn't look poised to break in at the moment either.

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01-22-2012, 12:37 PM
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He has been a victim to a combination of things. Depth at D (very next year we draft Doughty, Jack and Doughty solidify themselves immediately, now he is fighting for a 5-6 slot with like 4-5 other mobile/offensive defensemen), injury issues (he actually played well in his 2nd camp, first camp for Doughty, but obviously we know what happened, Doughty made the team and he went down and was then injured and out for the season), and slow development. He seemed to take a step back after his injuries, he has developed a bit of a more defensive game lately, but he is still mainly a purely offensive defenseman with leadership qualities.

I still see him as a 3-4 puck mover in the mold of Visnovsky. He was impressive again in this year's training camp, just the same thing happened in Voynov taking that extra step. He would have played in the NHL by now if he were on another team, this team is pretty cutthroat when it comes to offensive defensemen competition.

We have 2 of the best young offensive defensemen signed for the next 6 years... I feel bad for all these guys we drafted as they are now all fighting and wasting their development time for 1 NHL spot, and likely won't see the show for 4-5 years after their draft, regardless of work or skill.

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01-22-2012, 01:59 PM
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Unfortunately Logan Macmillan was an Anaheim selection, not a San Jose pick.

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01-22-2012, 02:05 PM
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Andrew Knoll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DP View Post
Eh, can't agree Hickey a bust and Cameron a prospect. Plus, I've never heard Hickey not having a competitive edge. Wonder how much this guy really has seen of LA's 07 class play.
To clarify there, Cameron is not in the Kings system and he was ranked in Calgary's most recent Top 20. I deferred to the Calgary writer on that one. If he had him as the Flames' 18th ranked prospect, I was not about to label him a bust writing about an organization that Cameron was no longer a part of.

I have seen all of Hickey's last two camps and preseasons as I've covered the Kings the past two seasons for a couple Web sites and now the Los Angeles Daily News. I've seen a decent number of Monarchs games but I did a lot of asking around on his play there to boot.

Though I wouldn't say he is a surefire career AHL'er, is there any scenario in which he could meet the expectations? Would you look at the other guys in that top 20 or really even the entire first round that have yet to play a single NHL game and object to their being called busts?

I admit it was a close call, really the only close call on the list. Moller was a little tricky for logistical reasons but as far as an evaluation, sure, I could understand thinking that calling Hickey a bust is bit premature. But in looking at his play and his trajectory in the organization, I just don't see him landing and neither did the sources I talked to for background information. It seemed that in some ways he let the game come to him, but in others he flat out lacked aggression.

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01-22-2012, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telos View Post
He has been a victim to a combination of things. Depth at D (very next year we draft Doughty, Jack and Doughty solidify themselves immediately, now he is fighting for a 5-6 slot with like 4-5 other mobile/offensive defensemen), injury issues (he actually played well in his 2nd camp, first camp for Doughty, but obviously we know what happened, Doughty made the team and he went down and was then injured and out for the season), and slow development. He seemed to take a step back after his injuries, he has developed a bit of a more defensive game lately, but he is still mainly a purely offensive defenseman with leadership qualities.

I still see him as a 3-4 puck mover in the mold of Visnovsky. He was impressive again in this year's training camp, just the same thing happened in Voynov taking that extra step. He would have played in the NHL by now if he were on another team, this team is pretty cutthroat when it comes to offensive defensemen competition.

We have 2 of the best young offensive defensemen signed for the next 6 years... I feel bad for all these guys we drafted as they are now all fighting and wasting their development time for 1 NHL spot, and likely won't see the show for 4-5 years after their draft, regardless of work or skill.
Even if he had edged out Voynov somehow, do you think he would have held his ground in the lineup when Martinez came back? Not looking into a crystal ball but right today, I would take Martinez over Hickey with no hesitation and so would the Kings having had numerous opportunities to pick between the two in 10-11 and 11-12 now. So he is their No. 8 or No. 9 defenseman (I would argue Muzzin is No. 8), now five years on from his draft year.

I did think his camp this year was better than last year's, last year he struggled though (perhaps "again" was in reference to an earlier camp though).

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01-22-2012, 02:44 PM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by King'sPawn View Post
The key thing, that I've heard many times, is if you can get 2-3 NHL players out of a draft, you've had a successful draft.

Simmonds and Martinez are NHL players. Hickey still has time to turn things around, and who knows how Oscar Moller would have done if he played in Sutter's system (personally, a line of Moller - Loktionov - Lewis sounds young and exciting).

Overall, it's a decent article. The Hickey pick likely will be questionable at best, but otherwise it's a fair article.
Yeah it was a relatively successful draft, especially considering a pick that would normally anchor a team's draft has not gone as expected. Both their second rounders were successful picks, Martinez has been a pleasant surprise and King has had some value to the organization even if he has not quite hit the top level.

Sorry for the lack of multi-quotes and thank you all for the feedback, keep it coming. Josh Deitell is moving to Sweden so for the foreseeable future I will handle the Kings duties here.

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01-22-2012, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Knoll View Post
To clarify there, Cameron is not in the Kings system and he was ranked in Calgary's most recent Top 20. I deferred to the Calgary writer on that one. If he had him as the Flames' 18th ranked prospect, I was not about to label him a bust writing about an organization that Cameron was no longer a part of.

I have seen all of Hickey's last two camps and preseasons as I've covered the Kings the past two seasons for a couple Web sites and now the Los Angeles Daily News. I've seen a decent number of Monarchs games but I did a lot of asking around on his play there to boot.

Though I wouldn't say he is a surefire career AHL'er, is there any scenario in which he could meet the expectations? Would you look at the other guys in that top 20 or really even the entire first round that have yet to play a single NHL game and object to their being called busts?

I admit it was a close call, really the only close call on the list. Moller was a little tricky for logistical reasons but as far as an evaluation, sure, I could understand thinking that calling Hickey a bust is bit premature. But in looking at his play and his trajectory in the organization, I just don't see him landing and neither did the sources I talked to for background information. It seemed that in some ways he let the game come to him, but in others he flat out lacked aggression.
So Cameron is a top 18 on arguably the weakest organization depth wise while being in the ECHL and he's a prospect but Hickey, who is 9th on our teams list btw and likely would be in the NHl on several other organizational depth charts, is a bust?

Also, since when is not meeting expectations equated to being a bust? Trevor Lewis is unlikely to reach his expectations as a 1st rounder, but I wouldn't call him a bust either. He's still an NHLer and can contribute. A bust would mean thre is no reason to expect a player will contribute anything meaningful and that's still much to early to say for Hickey.

And yeah, to say Hickey doesn't have competitive fire isn't accurate at all. Some guys don't display it like a Richards, but they are still very competitive. I'd say the fact Hickey has showed the level of patience he has and is still hardworking and dedicated like he is, despite everyone coming down on him for not reaching the NHL yet, is proof of being competitive in itself.

The write up on Hickey reads as if you have a personal grudge with him to be honest.

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01-22-2012, 03:25 PM
  #12
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If I were evaluating Cameron in isolation, what label do you think I would have given him? Can we please move along from the Cameron/Hickey comparison that I tried to obviate earlier? I did not want to encroach on another writer's territory there, conversely, Hickey is in an organization I am now covering.

As far as Lewis, he's made linear progress, he has established himself as an NHL player, he has established his identity as a pro and he has had more success than some of the players taken on either side of him in the draft (Wishart, Helenius, Mitera, et al). Can any of those things be said of Hickey? We are quibbling over whether he's been a significant disappointment or a bust here, are we not?

I respect the opinion that calling him a bust may be premature. Please trust that it was not something I failed to consider in assigning him the label. I am not sure how many other teams would have him in the NHL, but that is far too speculative. If you look at the rankings on HF, he was ahead of Muzzin and Martinez, but things have not played out that way.

I do not have any personal animosity toward Hickey nor do I have any personal stake in his performance. Please refrain from making such a suggestion. If we differ in opinion on his competitiveness or long-term prospects, I can certainly respect that. But to suggest my evaluation was so unprofessional is not appropriate based on a difference of opinion.

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01-22-2012, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Knoll View Post
If I were evaluating Cameron in isolation, what label do you think I would have given him? Can we please move along from the Cameron/Hickey comparison that I tried to obviate earlier? I did not want to encroach on another writer's territory there, conversely, Hickey is in an organization I am now covering.
By making a call on Cameron, you are encroaching. I know Cameron was a Kings draft pick and as such you were forced into making a call on him, but to use a top 20 listing as your basis, then to not use a top 10 ranking to allow Hickey also be labelled a prospect, is using a different standard. Why do that?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Knoll View Post
As far as Lewis, he's made linear progress, he has established himself as an NHL player, he has established his identity as a pro and he has had more success than some of the players taken on either side of him in the draft (Wishart, Helenius, Mitera, et al). Can any of those things be said of Hickey? We are quibbling over whether he's been a significant disappointment or a bust here, are we not?
Not at all. We are discussing whether or not Hickey is a prospect or a bust. No one is debating Hickey's a disappointment, and if you had labelled him as such it'd be widely agreed to. You labelled him a bust however and that is inaccurate.

Also, to say Lewis isn't a bust because guys around him appear to be busts is not a very smart way to gauge things IMO. He should be labelled a bust/success by his own performance, reagrdless of who was picked around him and their relative success/disappointment.

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I am not sure how many other teams would have him in the NHL, but that is far too speculative.
So are prospects, which are talking about. The fact that there's even spectulation on the fact he very well could be in NHL right now warrants that he likely isn't a bust though, wouldn't it? [/QUOTE]

Quote:
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I do not have any personal animosity toward Hickey nor do I have any personal stake in his performance. Please refrain from making such a suggestion. If we differ in opinion on his competitiveness or long-term prospects, I can certainly respect that. But to suggest my evaluation was so unprofessional is not appropriate based on a difference of opinion.
Sorry to make it sound like I thought you had a hate on for Hickey or something. I can understand how that would appear to be. I was more making the comment to illustrate how it reads as an outside party. As a former editor, I guess I evaluate things that way at times. It just felt from reading the article that you judged Hickey far harder than other prospects. I know as a high 1st rounder that shoud be somewhat accounted for, but when I read Hickey's write-up and I read Moller's for example, I don't see how one is a bust and the other is an NHL player when Hickey is still making progress in the minors and Moller has blown several chances to make the NHL club full time and is back in Europe, which is 95 per cent of the time a death sentence to an NHL career.

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01-22-2012, 03:54 PM
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Telos
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Knoll View Post
Even if he had edged out Voynov somehow, do you think he would have held his ground in the lineup when Martinez came back? Not looking into a crystal ball but right today, I would take Martinez over Hickey with no hesitation and so would the Kings having had numerous opportunities to pick between the two in 10-11 and 11-12 now. So he is their No. 8 or No. 9 defenseman (I would argue Muzzin is No. 8), now five years on from his draft year.

I did think his camp this year was better than last year's, last year he struggled though (perhaps "again" was in reference to an earlier camp though).
I don't care who you are, if you acquire and develop mainly offensive defensemen, you are going to have "busts" by sheer default. He needs to be moved. He would have 100+ NHL games under his belt by now if he were on a team that actually needed him. The year after his draft year, after Doughty's performance, it was sealed that he would never sniff a top 4 position with this club. Ever. Then we went on to flood our depth with offensive defensemen. He is competing with Voynov, Muzzin, Martinez, and Deslauriers all for one 5-6 spot, which is looking more and more to be Voynov's. He needs to be moved, pure and simple.

He may not be a 60 point defenseman, but to say he isn't NHL caliber would be wrong and not taking the whole situation in proper context (not to say that is what you are suggesting, but merely to say he has no future here and is now stuck in the AHL through no fault of his own).

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01-22-2012, 04:23 PM
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@ Kingsfan, we will just have to put the Cameron thing aside, I think you understand very clearly that the distinction between the two players was not an indication that anyone thinks Hickey is inferior in any way to Cameron as a player. I evaluated Cameron honestly and critically, but I will leave his status and rating/grade to the Calgary writer.

Lewis is a PK guy who generates offensive zone time and he dresses every night. By any objective standard, he would be labeled an NHL player and no worse. By any objective standard, Hickey would be labeled a prospect at best. There is no persuasive argument for Hickey's accomplishments in knocking Lewis's vis-a-vis the ranking system as a result of those facts.

Hickey could be in the NHL theoretically but there is no firm indication that would be if he were in system X or system Y.Where is he outperforming the competition in the AHL so handily? It took a holdout and an injury to put him in the mix with two other guys (Voynov, Muzzin) for a short-term callup and he did not earn that. I don't think there are very many competitive teams that would have him in the lineup, if you are daring me to make an educated guess here. Time will tell if the label was applied prematurely, but there is nothing definitive right now to say that it was.

@Telos, that was a very fair statement however I think saying he could have 100+ games under his belt is a bit lofty. Further, no player is stuck in any situation through "no fault of his own." The Kings have used three different players in the No. 6 role, all of whom have been either offensive or two-way defenseman. That means there were at least three opportunities for him to crack the lineup and that his style of play was not a limitation in doing so. I have also heretofore avoided bringing up the name Davis Drewiskie, so as not to completely irritate anyone.

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01-22-2012, 04:58 PM
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I still disagree with your line of thinking in this write up. Kidd, Rowen etc yes they can be considered busts. Hickey is close to playing in the NHL. I too watched the preseason games, and he played well IMO. I thought he outplayed Martinez, who I think has taken a step back from his play last season. I think Hickey would have Martinez's spot this season, but Hickey needs to play and not sit like Martinez is. Muzzin is more along the lines of a stay-at-home rather than a pmd like Hickey, those two are competing for different spots. Muzzin is not in the conversation when replacing JJ, DD, VV or Martinez. Hickey is in that conversation. All Muzzin has in front of him is a guy who sits in Harrolds old seat in Drewiski. Muzzin, like Hickey needs to play every night and not munch on press box munchies.

Hey, if we're only disagreeing about 2 players on your write, you've done a good job. It can't be easy, I understand.

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01-22-2012, 05:48 PM
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Muzzin is a two-way defenseman, yes. I would agree Martinez and Hickey is a closer comparison style-wise. Nonetheless, my point was that it's not the Kings said clearly that they wanted a shutdown guy in that No. 6 role, they've used four different guys, none of whom are in stark contrast to Hickey and some of whom have been quite similar. There's some argument that Hickey needs to play regularly but last year Martinez was a regular, playing in 60 games. This year, Voynov has been a regular.

I was fully aware that the bust label for Hickey would cause a bit of a stir, I even talked it over with my editor and he was the player I discussed the most frequently with the most people. I would say that most people inside the organization have echoed the sentiment that many of you have expressed here, particularly in your post, DP. That said, that's like asking Pepsi's CEO if Crystal Pepsi will be as successful as the original in some ways, so I sought opinions that were outside the scope of management and coaching staff. Not one person actively praised Hickey and their composite opinions are represented in the writeup.

In any case, I admit it was bold but how much would we have been discussing the piece if I didn't make the bolder choice? I could have minced words and qualified statements and told you more of what you already knew, but who is begging for that?

I appreciate both the feedback and the dialogue, I don't feel under siege at all but thank you for the reassuring words. The only things I wanted to clear up for sure were that I had no personal or professional ax to grind with Hickey or any other player, and that I will leave some other writers to corner the negativity market in Southern California.

You will see in the forthcoming talent/future updates for the player profiles (I updated nearly every one of them, those are pending) that I am actually pretty positive in evaluating guys. You will also see changes in the top 20, with some players rising and their evaluations being more favorable. I've been covering the Ducks for over a year here and you can see in the comments on their board that I've had a considerably more positive demeanor than the previous HF writer for Anaheim. These are all young guys here trying to find their way, most of them will not make it unfortunately but it's my job to provide honest evaluations about their potential and that's all I am out to do.


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01-22-2012, 10:36 PM
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@ Kingsfan, we will just have to put the Cameron thing aside, I think you understand very clearly that the distinction between the two players was not an indication that anyone thinks Hickey is inferior in any way to Cameron as a player. I evaluated Cameron honestly and critically, but I will leave his status and rating/grade to the Calgary writer.
So you evaluate Cameron yourself, but leave his status as the same as what the Flames writer does, even if it makes no sense and is inferior to a noticably better prospect on HF (Hickey 9th in LA, Cameron 18 in Calgary)? I don't get it. If Cameron is a prospect, so is Hickey.

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Lewis is a PK guy who generates offensive zone time and he dresses every night. By any objective standard, he would be labeled an NHL player and no worse. By any objective standard, Hickey would be labeled a prospect at best. There is no persuasive argument for Hickey's accomplishments in knocking Lewis's vis-a-vis the ranking system as a result of those facts.
Lewis was used as an example of someone who isn't a bust. To assert Hickey can not achieve the same level that Lewis already has is false. As such, how can hickey be labelled a bust when he could still very easily reach the level of a Trevor Lewis?

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Hickey could be in the NHL theoretically but there is no firm indication that would be if he were in system X or system Y.
No one in the AHL has firm indication of being ahead of any NHL player. You don't label them all busts though.

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Where is he outperforming the competition in the AHL so handily?
I'd contend he could make a very good run at breaking into the bluelines of Edmonton, Tampa Bay and Columbus off the top of my head. I'd have to look at other depth charts to give more examples, but it has been a wideheld contention on these boards that Hickey's stuck behind a strong depth chart more than anything for why he's not an NHLer yet, at least on a part time basis, ala Martinez.

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It took a holdout and an injury to put him in the mix with two other guys (Voynov, Muzzin) for a short-term callup and he did not earn that. I don't think there are very many competitive teams that would have him in the lineup, if you are daring me to make an educated guess here. Time will tell if the label was applied prematurely, but there is nothing definitive right now to say that it was.
Because Hickey was behind Voynov does not mean he's a bust. Voynov is being compared on these boards to Zhitnik and Zubov, high levels for anyone to live up too. It should be noted as well that Hickey makes $1.3 million at the pro level and we are very tight to the cap, while Voynov makes $500K less. That factored in a great deal in all likelihood. If you go back and reread the training camp threads ayou see that Voynov and Hickey were generally thought to be even in performance, but Hickey's higher cap hit at a time when we were about $1 million under the cap made it nearly impossible to keep him without moving someone out.

Bottom line, this all boils down to my disagreement in your assessment that hickey is a bust, a term I think you are using solely on where he was selected as opposed to what he could achieve at the NHL level.

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01-22-2012, 11:45 PM
  #19
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I'll have a talk with the Flames writer about changing Cameron to a bust, because, let's be honest, he is a bust. Whatever he is, it has no bearing on Hickey. This is the last statement I am making about Cameron, probably in my entire life.

Also, being a bust is somewhat relative. There are busts that have played NHL games, it's not a threshold matter of making the league. Are you going to cry foul that he's held to a slightly higher standard than say Dwight King when he was the fourth overall selection in the draft? If he doesn't stick as a career NHL'er, the bust label will be more than fair. Yes, a No. 4 overall pick has different standards than a guy taken on the second day, I don't think that is a controversial way to assess draft selections.

If he is going to do what Lewis is done, he's going to take considerably more time to do it. Lewis was an 06 draftee and this is his second season as a full-time NHL'er. When you're asserting that he could reach the level of a fourth-liner in two or more seasons longer, you're not making a compelling case for his potential, sorry.

I said I doubt Hickey would make the roster of any competitive team. You proceeded to reel off three non-competitive teams and St Louis, and they're all teams with injuries that he'd have only a chance at making. Columbus is an exception, but they are the least competitive team I could think of anyway.

Voynov being compared to Zubov is like Valabik being compared to Chara (similar style, same nationality, big talent gap, lazy comparison). Voynov is a nifty player, like him a lot, but that sort of comparison is lofty to use a euphemism. To say that he was some spectacular prospect that couldn't be passed up that held down Hickey would be total revisionist (recent) history. They had the same opportunity and the organization would have been thrilled if Hickey had succeeded.

The Kings had been tight with the cap, this is true, but they could have accommodated the salary disparity then and could certainly do it now given Gagne's situation. That did not make the determination and Voynov's play has shown as much.

As far as the bottom line goes, this is a smoke vs fire debate. You're saying there's smoke, I'm taking it to the next level and saying there is fire. Time will tell which one of our informed opinions is correct, no?


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01-23-2012, 12:26 AM
  #20
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Also, being a bust is somewhat relative. There are busts that have played NHL games, it's not a threshold matter of making the league. Are you going to cry foul that he's held to a slightly higher standard than say Dwight King when he was the fourth overall selection in the draft?
Of course not. You do expect more out of a high pick than a 5th rounder. But That still doesn't mean he's a bust, which is the root of what I'm going at.

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If he is going to do what Lewis is done, he's going to take considerably more time to do it. Lewis was an 06 draftee and this is his second season as a full-time NHL'er. When you're asserting that he could reach the level of a fourth-liner in two or more seasons longer, you're not making a compelling case for his potential, sorry.
If Lewis was a D-man would he be in the NHL? The fact that there are twice as many forward spots as D spots is what has Lewis in the NHL. But he's still not a bust is he? Lewis benefits from position but it's still the same. Think of it this way, in terms of trade value, if we traded Hickey, would we take a guy like Lewis for him? I doubt it.

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I said I doubt Hickey would make the roster of any competitive team. You proceeded to reel off three non-competitive teams and St Louis, and they're all teams with injuries that he'd have only a chance at making. Columbus is an exception, but they are the least competitive team I could think of anyway.
So only competitive teams count? That's such a ridiculous standard. Hickey has a strong possibility to make those teams, and without injuries as an excuse. Since when does playing on a non-competitive team make it not legit? Is Theo Peckham not an NHLer because he's on the Oilers?

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Voynov being compared to Zubov is like Valabik being compared to Chara (similar style, same nationality, big talent gap, lazy comparison). Voynov is a nifty player, like him a lot, but that sort of comparison is lofty to use a euphemism. To say that he was some spectacular prospect that couldn't be passed up that held down Hickey would be total revisionist (recent) history. They had the same opportunity and the organization would have been thrilled if Hickey had succeeded.
Didn't say the Zubov comparisions where proper (in fact I've argued against them) but they have been used on this board. Not sure if I've ever seen a Valabik = Chara discussion since the same season valabik was drafted. That said, it doesn't dispute the fact Voynov was well respected and a well regarded prospect, even prior to this season. Everyone had widely argeed Voynov was a very good prospect. there was only one roster spoty available, to lose out to Voynov is not indiciative of somehow being a bust. He lost out to Voynov, not Kevin Dallman.

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The Kings had been tight with the cap, this is true, but they could have accommodated the salary disparity then and could certainly do it now given Gagne's situation. That did not make the determination and Voynov's play has shown as much.
So Gagne is out and we recall hickey? How does that work? How does Gagne's injury allow for a roster spot on D? If you are implying it allows them to send down Voynov you and I both know that won't happen. Voynov has established himself and his roll in this line up, you don't mess with that until you have too, such as with injury.

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01-23-2012, 01:00 AM
  #21
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How are you setting up these faulty scenarios/comparisons and then criticizing ME for responding? You set up the Lewis/Hickey dichotomy, I was trying to work with it. As far as defense/forward disparity, well, if DMen are still taking so long to arrive, why are so many of the first rounders on defense from both Hickey and Lewis's drafts already either in the NHL or clearly busts?

The Gagne comment pertained to the salary cap, not roster space, and they had enough cap space to accommodate Hickey even before that. Voynov is up and Hickey is down today for the same reason Voynov was up and Hickey was down on the opening night of the season, Voynov is a noticeably better player.

And, in truth, it was not even Voynov vs Hickey, it was actually Voynov vs Martinez because the team knew full well that Doughty would re-up eventually. So now Hickey has lost out on his NHL debut to Voynov, Muzzin, Martinez and Drewiskie, not just Voynov. At least his other supporters here understand that he needs a change of scenery, you're making it sound as though he is ready to go now and the Kings are just loaded with these superb defensive prospects. These guys range from above average to respectable prospects, it's not like he is getting passed up elite prospects, which is what he was billed as.

As far as making other rosters, my statement is that he would not make the roster of a competitive team. To say that he'd make some roster somewhere is not that convincing of a point. I mean there are plenty of non-NHL caliber player who have meandered into the NHL because of circumstance.

In any case, I understand your position and at its core I see your point that he should still be considered a prospect. We shall see what the appropriate categorization was, I'll admit he's not as clear of a bust as say Mike Mitera but he's certainly not where he should be at this stage in his development either.

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01-23-2012, 10:20 AM
  #22
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How are you setting up these faulty scenarios/comparisons and then criticizing ME for responding? You set up the Lewis/Hickey dichotomy, I was trying to work with it. As far as defense/forward disparity, well, if DMen are still taking so long to arrive, why are so many of the first rounders on defense from both Hickey and Lewis's drafts already either in the NHL or clearly busts?
I'm simply stating that the level lewis has attained has been clearly stated, by both you and me, as being an NHL player, not a bust. And I've also stated that Hickey still can very easily attain that same level. If that is indeed the current case, as I suspect it is, then how can you label Hickey a bust. That's the point I'm driving at, don't take it as critizism.

As for your critique of Hickey versus other D-men from his draft year, only two have reached 100 games in the NHL so far, Alzner and Shattenkirk. Of the 11 defensemen drafted in the first round, seven have played 56 NHL games or less in their careers and only one, Alzner, hasn't played in the AHL either this year or last year. The only difference between Hickey and many of his peers, outside of Alzner and Shattenkirk, is he hasn't had a recall for a decent cup of coffee yet in terms of NHL games played. Explain to me how so many of the first rounders from Hickey's draft are either in the NHL or clear busts?

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The Gagne comment pertained to the salary cap, not roster space, and they had enough cap space to accommodate Hickey even before that. Voynov is up and Hickey is down today for the same reason Voynov was up and Hickey was down on the opening night of the season, Voynov is a noticeably better player.
I don't agree at all. LA had little cap space when Voynov was recalled, and if they were about $1 million below the cap at that time, they wouldn't have been able to fit in Hickey without sending someone else away. Now that Voynov has established himself, why mess with a good thing? And Gagne's injury is irrelevant to the discussion, as I stated earlier. The cap space is no longer an issue, as salaries are pro-rated downward now. Gagne would matter only for a roster spot, which would clearly go for a forward not a D-man. But either way, agree to disagree on that point.

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And, in truth, it was not even Voynov vs Hickey, it was actually Voynov vs Martinez because the team knew full well that Doughty would re-up eventually. So now Hickey has lost out on his NHL debut to Voynov, Muzzin, Martinez and Drewiskie, not just Voynov.
I'll agree on Voynov and A-Mart but not on Muzzin and Dewiske, and any Kings fan would know there's a world of difference between DD44 and Hickey. Muzzin made the NHl quicker, sure, but that was 15 months ago. Does that mean Hickey's still (or ever was) behind him? No. Prospects move up and down all the time. I could argue that if Muzzin was so NHL ready, why hasn't he been back up in 15+ months? A pre-season injury can't be the only excuse.

And Drewiske is a #7/8 d-man on this team. He plays a roll no rookie should play, hence why he also edged out Voynov in camp as well. No one then or now debates that Drewiske is ahead of Voynov, and the same goes with Hickey.

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At least his other supporters here understand that he needs a change of scenery, you're making it sound as though he is ready to go now and the Kings are just loaded with these superb defensive prospects. These guys range from above average to respectable prospects, it's not like he is getting passed up elite prospects, which is what he was billed as.
Once agin, I'm not debating that Hickey is some superb prospect. I never said he was or made any such assertion. But don't pretend the flaw with this entire argument is on my end. All I'm discussing is that Hickey is not a bust. I never said he's a future all-star or some potential superstar. I'm saying he's not a bust, not yet anyways. He's got, IMO, a decent NHL career ahead of him and could be similar to what A-Mart was last year or perhaps like a lower scoring Jean-Michael Liles. Not worth the 4th overall pick, which once again I never disputed, but certainly not a bust. To label him a bust essentially says he's never going to amount to anything at all. I disagree strongly with that at this time.

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As far as making other rosters, my statement is that he would not make the roster of a competitive team. To say that he'd make some roster somewhere is not that convincing of a point. I mean there are plenty of non-NHL caliber player who have meandered into the NHL because of circumstance.
Once again, we can agree to disagree on this, but to essentially say if a player makes a non-competitive team he is by default a poor player or not NHL worthy is just ignorant IMO. Plenty of players have worked their way into an NHL team through injuries after being labelled a career minor leaguer only to go and play, and play well, for a lengthy career.

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In any case, I understand your position and at its core I see your point that he should still be considered a prospect. We shall see what the appropriate categorization was, I'll admit he's not as clear of a bust as say Mike Mitera but he's certainly not where he should be at this stage in his development either.
I 100% agree with this statement and in essence this is 100% what I was trying to say.

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01-23-2012, 06:43 PM
  #23
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I think most of what needs to be said has been said here but just a quick response.

Obviously I threw Drewiskie in there for a laugh but Muzzin I would say is still ahead of Hickey on the Kings' depth chart, despite some setbacks of his own. I talked to one source who said he would rank Muzzin as the number two prospect in the entire organization. In rookie camp, he wore the C for the Kings' youngsters. His total game--offense, defense, competitiveness, size--seems closer to me personally as well. I think he got a little fat off his early success and had some little nagging stuff happen, but he will be in the NHL before long.

We can play qualifying numbers all day on other guys in the 06 and 07 classes but you look at the guys taken behind Hickey and most of them have at least a full season's worth of games under their belt and many of them have it uninterrupted (called up and not sent back down). The next four guys taken--Alzner, Ellerby, McDonagh and Shattenkirk--all have that many. Subban was a second rounder and he's put in over 100. There are also other guys teetering on bust status who have played some games even.

From 06, the top defenseman selected (as Hickey was) will finish this season with 300 games under his belt while guys like Fisher and Mitera are already basically busts.

The year AFTER Hickey's draft year, the first five D taken will all finish the season with 200+ games played and six of the first seven will (the only one who won't? Kings pick Colten Teubert). There are three more guys in the round that will be around 200 games, too, a little short in most cases but for sure two seasons worth of games.

I think it is very fair to say that he is very far behind his peers at this point, and that some of the guys he's not behind have already been labeled busts. We are quibbling over a matter of degree here and there is no way either of us can prove we are right at this very moment.

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01-23-2012, 06:52 PM
  #24
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Hickey needs to start doing steriods and practicing witchcraft.

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01-23-2012, 07:07 PM
  #25
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Hickey needs to start doing steriods and practicing witchcraft.
Proven formula for success!

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